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Relation between SmartBody and Unity
February 26, 2013
11:16 pm
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Karen
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Hello,

I'm trying to develop a character or use an existing SmartBody character to create the scene of a counselor giving advice to a patient. It will include a dialog and lip synchronization. Where should I start? What exactly is the relationship between SmartBody and Unity? Do I need to use both?

Thank you,

Karen

February 27, 2013
6:10 am
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Hi Karen,

SmartBody is almost exclusively a character animation engine with a lot of functionality and tools related to the movement of humanoid characters. Unity on the other hand is a game engine that handles rendering, lighting, particles, general animation, as well as some character animation. Internally, many of our projects use both Unity and SmartBody, where SmartBody is used as a plugin into Unity and takes over control of the characters, while Unity handles the other aspects.

So the short answer is that if you had limited character-related functionality, you can probably use Unity for everything. If you need limited game-like functionality, you can use SmartBody for everything, or you can use both.

If this is for non-commercial or academic use, you can download ICT's Virtual Human Toolkit (https://confluence.ict.usc.edu/display/VHTK/Home) which contains a distributable version of Unity with the SmartBody plugin. This contains a recent, but not cutting edge version of SmartBody (although you can probably just update to the latest SmartBody revision). If this is for commercial or non-academic use, you can just use SmartBody alone, or with the Ogre rendering engine.

Ari

February 27, 2013
8:43 pm
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Karen,

 

Please feel free to ask me any questions about setting up and using SmartBody.

 

Ari

 

February 28, 2013
9:06 pm
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Karen
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Hi Ari,

I have been reading the SmartBody manual and looking at the different ways to animate characters. I'm a little confused but I think the easiest way would be to create a python file just like the ones under the "Examples" folder and then run it in SmartBody. I want to use one of the existing characters, probably brad and be able to move him around. I also want to be able to give him a dialogue created in the NPC editor and do lip synchronizing. What is the best way to do this?

Thank you,

Karen

February 28, 2013
9:56 pm
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Are you using the Virtual Human Toolkit, or just SmartBody directory (sbm-fltk.exe)? If you are using the NPC Editor, then I assume you are using the toolkit?

If you are using the Toolkit, there should be some documentation on how to use it..?

 

If you are using sbm-fltk.exe, you can File->Load using examples/AddCharacterDemo.py.

This will create a Brad character. You can then left click on him, then right click somewhere else in the scene to make him move.

You can also run Window->BML Creator and play around with different kinds of commands, such as head nodding, gazing, pointing, whatever. To run speech, you need to run one of the speech relays (smartbody/bin/TtsRelay/bin/x86/Release/TtsRelayGui.exe) and then you can play some speech BML. The lip synchronization will happen automatically.

 

Perhaps I should create and post some videos online that show how to do these things?

 

Ari

 

March 5, 2013
3:54 pm
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Karen
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Ari,

Thank you so much, I have been able to make Brad do head movements with the BML creator using the drop down menu for all the different choices. However, for Gazing, Locomotion, and all the others there are no dropdown menus so I dont know what I should specify on the blank boxes.

Also, I tried running the "Speech Demo" and I ran the speech relay by going to (smartbody/bin/TtsRelay/bin/x86/Release/TtsRelayGui.exe) and also by going to Window -> Speech Relay from SmartBody. Both times a command window popped up and it said it was adding Microsoft Anna and other things but I was never able to hear the demo. Am I missing something? How can I hear the speech demo? It would play and the characters would move but there was no sound to them.

When I opened the Speech Relay it seemed like it never finished loading, it never prompted me to enter anything.

Please help! It would be great if you could post some videos online :),

Thank you,

Karen

February 17, 2014
5:54 pm
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(it looks like I am about 11 months late with this reply, but here it is anyway...)

 

SmartBody communicates with the Speech Relay via ActiveMQ. It is likely that you don't have ActiveMQ installed, and that is why the speech relay doesn't work.

 

Here's the link to download ActiveMQ:

 

https://activemq.apache.org/download.html

 

Ari

 

February 2, 2015
1:04 am
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Ari, 

I tried to go into TTSRelaygui.exe. After i open it, it says stop working. What must be the problem?I already installed ActiveMQ on my laptop. 

February 2, 2015
6:47 pm
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Are you using the latest Windows SDK?

https://sourceforge.net/projects/smartbody/files/SmartBody-r5919-windows.exe/download

 

If so, can you run the TTSRelaygui.exe from the command line and post the output?

 

Ari

February 3, 2015
12:41 am
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No, it's Smartbody r5615 windows SDK.

February 3, 2015
12:51 am
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Can you download the newer one (5919) and try again? I think I fixed that problem on the newer SDK.

 

Ari

February 3, 2015
1:55 am
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Okay i am now downloading the latest version. 

Thank you very much.